This is not another version of the 494 stories about the shooting last night in Mesa that were copied and pasted from the news wire. The shooting occurred a mere 957 feet (319 yards or .18 miles) from our home, and we happened to be outside when the whole thing went down.
Here is our first hand eye ear-witness account of the events that occurred WAY too close to our house last night:
Last night, about 11:30 pm MST, Capitalist Pig and I went outside for a cigarette. A few minutes later, we heard 8 or 9 gunshots coming from fairly close range. Five or six rounds followed by a second or two pause, then three shots – each spaced about a second apart. We surmised the following from what we heard:
- The shots were being fired from the Northeast, and were VERY close.
- A handgun was being used, probably a .40 or .45 caliber
- We were on the muzzle end of the shots – a very uneasy feeling to say the least.
In retrospect, it would have been in our best interest to go inside at that point, but we did not. I’m not sure what CP was thinking at this point, but my brain was still trying to process what I had just heard.
The second round of shots came about four minutes later. We heard a faint scream (female voice), a siren from a distance that sounded like a fire truck, then a “chirp” from what sounded like a police car pulling up to the scene. Immediately following, rapid fire, sounded like at least 12 rounds. At least one magazine was being emptied as quickly as possible, and in the general direction of our house (again).
Four minutes would be the minimum amount of time it would take for the police to get there from the Mesa Police substation (1.1 miles from the scene) If someone had called 911 immediately after the first shots were fired. While I consider this an exemplary response time from the PD, the old saying, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away” came to mind right after the second round of shots were fired.
A barrage of police, ambulance and fire truck sirens could now be heard in the distance, and were moving closer to us by the second. About one minute later, massive rapid fire from several firearms. I couldn’t tell you how many rounds were fired in this exchange, but I can say that it sounded like several magazines were emptied in a couple of seconds.
At this point, CP and I realized that this was very likely an ongoing situation, and we needed to get inside right quick. My fight or flight response had kicked in after the first round of fire, but the rest of me apparently needed time to catch up.
I shuffled myself off to the safest place in the house (a small bathroom), and CP was cool headed enough to grab my cell phone and hand it to me before getting out the Ruger P90. CP then valiantly stood watch – finding a good place in the house to keep an eye on the doors and still have cover. As I worked on calming myself down, I sent a text to my next door neighbor to let her know that she needed to stay inside and find cover.
I think I had been in the bathroom about 15 minutes when I heard a loudspeaker that may have been coming from the helicopter that was still circling directly overhead. I think they said, “Do NOT go outside” twice (it was very Charlie Brown Teacher sounding).
If the last part of the story seems extreme, or overly dramatic to you, keep in mind that our normally quiet and somewhat serene neighborhood had just been turned into a gunnery range. CP saw police cars racing down our street and we could hear the sound of the helicopter changing positions (which it does when it is still hunting for someone), and it was apparent that the situation was not yet under control. Even after several dozen rounds of fire, the bad guy(s) were still loose, and it was very possible that someone was looking for a place to hide (or worse) in the neighborhood.
At about 1:30 am, the noises had died down, and CP sounded a tentative all clear. A search on the internet and Twitter for what had just happened was fruitless, so we proceeded outside with caution. CP did a sweep of the yard (all-clear), and at about 1:45, we heard the sound of fire trucks leaving the scene.
We found out this morning that after this guy killed his ex-wife and friend at a house party then traded shots with the police (where he shot an officer), he barricaded himself in the house for a couple of hours before surrendering.
While we weren’t victims last night, I was still pretty scared during the event. The only comfort I was able to find while this was all going on is that we had the ability to defend ourselves if the bad guy had tried to make us another victim. While we both consider firing our weapons at another living thing a VERY last resort, knowing that we could if we needed to – Priceless.
Tags: 2nd amendment, Arizona, Gun news, Mesa, Mesa Crime, Mesa Shooting